Europa League: Stade Rennais 1 – 1 Atlético

Thre substitutes earn Atleti a point late on

Montaño keeps the ball from Domínguez(

Montaño keeps the ball from Domínguez

Atlético Madrid got away with a draw against Stade Rennais on Thursday night.

Juanfran scored late on for the Rojiblancos, who were trailing after a fantastic strike by Montaño had deservedly given the French side the lead.

Before the match Gregorio Manzano had announced to use his best players for this match and his starting formation beared few surprises, with Adrián starting over José Antonio Reyes being the only novelty.

Rennes did well in the first half to pressure our creative players and Atleti’s front three were void of useful passes. The French side was more dangerous and were often allowed to shoot from distance, but the first opportunity was for Gabi. His shot went off target.

In the 17th minute a Colombian forward hit the side netting, but it was Rennes’ forward Montaño who provided the danger, and not Atleti’s record signing Falcao, who saw little of the ball in the Route de Lorient stadium tonight.

Some minutes later Adrián’s shot was saved by goalkeeper Costil and Mario Suárez headed over from close range. Those were Atleti’s best chances in a poor first half.

At the other end Thibaut Courtois had his hands full. He saved shots by Kembo-Ekoko and Doumbia and saw the latter head just wide.

After the break Rennes continued to pressure Atleti on every part of the pitch, which led to various chances for the home side. In the 56th minute they finally were rewarded for their hard work. Montaño launched a missile from the middle of the park, to which Courtois had no answer.

Montaño’s strike seemed to be the wake up call the Rojiblancos needed, because Atlético almost immediately got one back. But from only a couple of yards out Falcao failed to get any power behind the ball to convert Diego’s header into a goal.

Just after an hour of play Atleti came very close when Diego hit a low shot towards the corner, but Costil pulled off an amazing save to keep the Brazilian out.

In the minutes that followed, with Salvio and Reyes brought on in the meantime, there were chances for Falcao, but for the first time in 7 Europa League matches the striker failed to find the back of the net.

In the 82nd minute substitute Pitroipa came close to doubling the lead for Stade Rennais, but his shot sailed wide. An attempt by centre back Mandjeck also whistled past the post.

Just as there seemed to be no time left, Atlético equalised. Reyes and Salvio quickly took a short corner, and the Argentine’s low cross was met by Juanfran at the second post. The winger controlled the ball and then smashed it towards goal. Costil had no chance as the shot went in off the crossbar.

In the dying seconds Rennes made a late push to keep all three points in Bretagne, but Atlético held on for an undeserved point.

We lead Group I of the Europa League with 4 points from two matches, along with Udinese who tied 1-1 with Celtic. Next up for Atleti is a trip to Udine on the 20th of October.

Line-up: Courtois; Perea, Miranda, Domínguez, Filipe; Diego, Mario, Gabi (“73 Reyes); Adrián (“63 Salvio), Falcao and Arda (“80 Juanfran).

Goals: 1-0 Montaño (“56); 1-1 Juanfran (“87)

  • John Greece

    Still wondering about Manzano…I think that we have to bring a more experienced coach

  • 92

    agreed John, but who could be that coach?

  • Matthijs

    The only players that did make a good impression where Salvio, Dominguez and Courtois. The rest needs to work harder like Rennes, continue pressing and working hard.

    The choises of Manzano are not happy the last two matches, I hope Silvio will be back soon.

    We can be glad with the point, because whe didn’t deserve it.

  • Jose Ignacio Perez-Laorga

    Fair result, Turan needs to react and so does Mario Suarez. Perea was the worst player in the match by far, the pressure got to him and it showed. Salvio definitely turned the match around with his intensity. Reyes is still not on top of his game and neither is Diego. Domingez and Courtois the best of our Atletico today. Manzano did wrong putting Reyes in, He should had put in Assunsao or Tiago to gain control of the midfield. And at the end of the match thank God Juanfran came around and saved a very important point. Manzano needs to sit down with his crew and do a little thinking, because if we play like this against Sevilla we are going down hard.
    Aupa Atleti!!!

  • Urban

    What worried me most except for lack of 100% fighting was the fact that we seriously lack physical presence in the field… Our players are fast and agile but slim and/or short. With French teams or English ones its gonna be hard. We could use some stronger players in the midfield, like Lass or Momo Sissoko or someone in that type, who would give us more options.

  • starvs

    Perea, not a right back. end of story.

    DJ Juanfran, good eye foot coordination, thank you,

  • SoLobo

    Just before the match with Barcelona, Manzano was a hero. Now he is someone he has to go? Juanfran was our worst player (somebody has mentioned that he was just a little better than Raul Garcia), now we thank him. Yes, Perea is not a right back, but he had good moments in tonight’s game. And with Silvio’s injury, who else could play in this position?! Maybe we can loan Ujfalusi for a couple of games? Just be patient. It was a good result. Of course it was a poor match, but ok, it happens! Manzano knows better than us.

  • Pantic_Panionios

    Adrian stop playing this game! It isn’t for you!! 1000 WRONG PASSES , 10000000 OFFSIDE POSITIONS!! GO AWAY!!!

    We need Arda and Salvio (or Reyes) on the wings to create chances for Flacao. Otherwise we cannot score!

    Bad day for Perea and Gabi.Diego was fine but he needs physical improvement.

    And i repeat: I DON’T WANT TO SEE AGAIN ADRIAN!!!!!!!!

  • starvs

    I didn’t mean to say I thought Manzano didn’t do well this game, I liked the starting 11. In hindsight I think Adrian has no place in this team currently considering Reyes, Salvio (who was great), and Pizzi were on the bench instead of him.

    Silvio simply needs to come back from injury. It would be in Atletis best interest to sign a veteran wingback who can play on the right or left as a backup.

  • atletisrael

    Not a bad result at all considering that the team can’t cope with pressure yet. I actually liked the starting lineup as well starvs and during first half it seemed that the only thing to change about it was salvio/reyes instead of adrian. Manzano read it but did not react on time, and that’s the only bad word i would say about him today.
    The team should spend the folowing weeks working on maintaining attacking mentality while being pressured around the field. It seemed our team had nothing to do with kicking the ball to the french net and preffered to let the belgium wonderboy feel it a bit too often instead. Rennes actually got it first and had a lot of long range shots (even though they were all bad ones, one of them got to the net after hitting alvaro’s back).
    One last individual request: Diego. We love u man. But please stop taking corners and FK!!! We have one of the most dangerous killer striker in the world on the field and he actually deserves better service.

  • 92

    You read my mind starvs, we definately need an utility player, but who can play on both wings?, perhaps Adriano from Barcelona?, he is a 1000 battles veteran, and he has no place in Barca’s starting 11, personally I think he could really help Atleti improve a lot in defense, instead of improvising with Perea as RB.

  • k14

    In my opinion, if the coach did any mistake, it would be forcing Diego to play on the far right.

    Perea isn’t skilled with the ball, thats it, we know it, he knows it, everyone knows it, but it was the only option, so its the fault of the idiot who sold both ufa and valera without getting a replacement.
    Mario and gabi were the weak link in the team this game, they couldn’t link up the defense with attack not even once.

  • Wate

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but did it seem to you that we were playing 4-3-3 against Rennes’ 4-5-1?

    I thought so and that would explain our weak midfield. It was also curious that we didn’t play almost any long balls to bypass the midfield, instead we tried to play through short passing. That was a courageous decision from Manzano and it almost cost us dearly. Luckily we did score at the end. I would like to hear Manzano’s thoughts about the game.

    Btw. it was Dominguez’s (small) mistake that lead to the 1-0 goal.

  • So atleti fans you were happy with curtois??

  • John Greece

    So Chelsea fan are you happy with Torres and the rest of your team?

  • pereabotadeoro

    i dont want to see PEREA playing!!wtf with him hs is also capitain!! aayyyy aaayyy ayyyy!!! his is finish!!

  • pereabotadeoro

    i dont want to see PEREA playing!!wtf with him hs is also capitain!! aayyyy aaayyy ayyyy!!! he is finish!! sorry

  • Javi

    The last two games have showed a great weakness with our current strategy: by playing with five midfields Rennes and Barsa preassured us as soon as our defense starts to bring the ball up and they destroy our ability to structure an attack even before it begins. It seemed almost impossible to get the ball past midfield this way, so of course getting it to Falcao was practically impossible. Teams know this and I bet Sevilla will do the same
    Either we try long passes from the defense or Cortouis or we come up with something else
    Salvio has earned a starting place in my book

  • Gert

    I think we need to stress the other team more when they’re in possession. We need to play higher as well. I can’t remember us passing back to our goalie as much as yesterday.
    Happy for Juanfran to be the hero of the day.

    @Chelsea Fan: I’m happy with Courtois being at Atlético. 1. He’s a great goalkeeper and 2. he brings up Atlético more in the Belgian press.

  • manazo_playhigh_plz

    any team tha gonna play pressure against will win for sure!! manzano still don’t have solution for that!!! our player are technical not physical

  • Wate

    Good observations, Javi. I think Manzano is going somewhere with this, otherwise he would’ve surely changed tactics. I remember Van Gaal praising 4-3-3 as it opens up lots of passing options, so I’m hoping we’re not halfway done yet. 😛

    Let’s see what he can do with it, our team has still a lot of integration to do. When the players are familiar with each others movement etc and have assimilated Manzano’s tactics, we’ll have a whole different team. That time will probably somewhere toward the end of the season, provided we play more or less the same starting eleven.

  • javi

    You are right Wate its still early, but I hope it happens way before the end of the season or our season will end early.
    Gert, I also agree with you, we need to presure them from the moment the goalie passes the ball or a defender gets it to break up their flow like barsa and Rennes did to us, instead of sitting back and waiting to see what they do-close up their avenues of play.

  • starvs

    Exactly, we cannot handle pressure for dick and we are not pressuring all that much ourselves; hopefully that will change in the coming weeks. Sevilla would be a huge win, I hope shit can come together by then.